Ferguson Elementary professional school counselors evaluated data and consulted with teachers and administrators to develop a schedule to deliver core curriculum lessons. To ensure all counseling standards and competencies were addressed the Gwinnett County Public Schools cross-walking tool and ASCA student planning program tool was used. All core curriculum lessons addressed one of the three ASCA domains: Personal/Social, Career, and Academic Development. Ms. Ferguson taught core curriculum lessons for grades 3rd-5th on a three-week rotation. Ms. Danish taught core curriculum lessons for grades K-2nd through the specials rotation.
School wide data showed a need to address attendance and discipline with core curriculum lessons, therefore attendance was addressed in September and conflict resolution strategies were addressed in October. The third grade attendance lesson and the fourth and fifth grade conflict resolution lessons were highlighted in component 8 of this application. All three of the lessons addressed one of our three program goals.
The third grade core curriculum lesson, taught to 139 students during Language Arts, addressed attendance and was titled "Bee At School Every Day". This lesson taught students why it was important to be at school every day on time, when it is appropriate to miss school, and how missing school impacts your grades. Students were given a pre and post-test. Students also participated in a discussion on attendance and worked in small groups to answer questions. The pre and post-test data collected showed the lesson increased student awareness on why attendance matters. Students showed gains on four of five questions. The highest gain was question two with 91% of students answering the question correctly, which was a 19% increase over the pre-test. Question one showed a decrease of 17% in the number of students answering the question correctly when compared to the pre-test. Outcome data showed an increase in the number of Hispanic students with 15 or more absences from 32 to 59 students. Since we did not meet our attendance goal, our school social worker will be in the building once a week to meet with parents and students as well as to run small groups focused on attendance. We are going to focus more attention on parent education regarding acceptable reasons for children to miss school and the importance of communicating these reasons in writing upon the student's return to school.
Conflict resolution core curriculum lessons were taught to 145 fourth graders and 130 fifth graders during their Language Arts time. The fourth grade lesson was "Wheel of Solutions". Students were taught different strategies for solving a conflict with peers and worked in pairs to practice using the different strategies. Students were given a pre and post-test to assess their increased knowledge on conflict resolutions strategies that were taught. Students showed gains on all four questions of the pre and post-test. The greatest gain was on question 1 with 65% answering correctly, an increase of 18% over the pre-test. The fifth grade lesson was entitled "Simon's Hook". The book "Simon's Hook" was read and the different conflict resolution strategies presented in the book were taught to students. Students used the new conflict resolution strategies to play a game. A pre and post-test was given to assess increased knowledge of conflict resolution strategies. The largest gain was on question 6 with 63% of students answering the question correctly, which was an increase of 28%. The outcome discipline data showed African American students were able to apply their increased knowledge on how to address conflict through their actions as we decreased the number of African American students who received referrals from 34 to 23 students. 65% of the African American students received discipline referrals during the 2015-2016 school year. While we reduced the gap in the number of African American students with discipline referrals by 26%, there is still a gap. 40% of the referrals written in 2016-2017 were to African American students, but they make up only 31% of our student population. There will be an increased focus on serving students who received discipline referrals in small group counseling during the 2017-2018 school year. Students who receive 2 or more discipline referrals will participate in our daily check-in program. Next year the K-2nd counselor will be on the specials rotation for nine weeks and then off for nine weeks. This will allow her to start small groups in October vs February. We hope this will allow us to continue to decrease the number of African American students who receive discipline referrals.